Where to Eat and Drink on the Waterfront in Philly

Waterfront beer gardens and upscale seafood restaurants along the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers.

In Philadelphia it’s sometimes easy to forget we have a few calming riverscapes at our disposal, whether you’re hanging out around Penn’s Landing or overlooking the Schuylkill. But there are more concepts along the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers than ever before, and each offers something special—from tried-and-true nightlife destinations and upscale dining to casual seafood eateries. To get your scenic dining fix this summer, take a look at our picks for the best waterfront restaurants in Philadelphia.

Cavanaugh's River Deck

Penn's Landing
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Part night club, part beer garden, the waterfront location of Cavanaugh’s is a Philly rite of passage. Cocktails, mules, and, of course, party buckets and fishbowls are at the bar, along with a fairly standard beer collection and a few summery seltzers. If you’re there to eat, wraps, sandwiches, and burgers make up most of the menu. The top reason to come, however, is to stay out late—you can drink and dance al fresco by the Delaware River, and even take a try at the waterslide.

The Deck on the Moshulu

Penn's Landing
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For quite possibly the most immersive riverview experience, the Moshulu is a historic ship outfitted with plenty of space to eat and drink on the open-air Wheelhouse Deck. Soak in views of the Delaware River, whether you’re here just for drinks in the lounge area, light bites, or a full dinner. Specialties include seafood, sushi, and seasonal cocktails—all very appropriate for the warm-weather deck. If you’re feeling extra fancy, stop by for brunch and order the Seafood Plateau and a cocktail party shaker to share with friends.

Available for Reservations

With warm weather comes The Garden, a new addition to Cherry Street Pier for relaxed bites, cocktails, and Taco Tuesday, when you can fill up on $2 tacos, including a veggie-friendly option made with avocado salsa. The rest of the week, sandwiches and snacks are your companions in this quieter riverside destination. Tables and bistro lights scattered across the massive reimagined pier offer a perfect balance for quintessential Philadelphia ambiance.
 

In Riva

East Falls
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Head Northwest along the banks of the Schuylkill River and you’ll run into In Riva, featuring a Naples-inspired menu and expansive, laidback patio facing the water. When it comes to food, In Riva delivers savory Italian antipasti and pasta in the lead up to the main event: wood-fired pizza in classic flavors that favor tradition with a twist. Spring for the burrata pie with rosemary and pistachio, or keep it classic with a Margherita and a house cocktail.

Available for Reservations

Keating's Rope & Anchor

Penn's Landing
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The Hilton hotel on Columbus Boulevard offers stunning harbor views, especially at Rope & Anchor, which offers a more upscale waterfront dining option either on the deck or in the dining room with large floor-to-ceiling windows. The menu focuses on sustainable seafood and locally sourced cuisine, with highlights including the Old Bay crab cake and vegan-friendly BBQ cauliflower. The restaurant puts you right in the thick of the Delaware River waterfront, just a stone’s throw from Spruce Street Harbor Park and Blue Cross RiverRink Summerfest.

Lark

Bala Cynwyd
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Just over on the other side of the river, chef Nicholas Elmi’s Lark offers a coastal Mediterranean menu and rooftop views of the Schuylkill. Situated on the seventh floor of the Ironworks at Pencoyd Building, Lark is an elevated option for handmade pastas and sustainable seafood dishes. Lark is a sister companion to The Landing Kitchen, Elmi’s other Ironworks concept, featuring an all-day menu and equally picturesque riverside views from the lower level.

Available for Reservations

Liberty Point

Penn's Landing
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The new Liberty Point is the city’s largest outdoor restaurant with panoramic waterfront views that can house no less than 1,400 people. The three-story space includes multiple outdoor dining decks, plus a permanent stage for live music and DJs. Whether you opt for picnic tables under twinkly lights or dining on the top-level circular deck, you can take your pick of warm weather-appropriate fare, from fish and chips to lobster mac n’ cheese. On tap there’s wine, draft cocktails, and local beer.

Available for Reservations

Head up to the Northeast for even more Delaware River views at Maggie’s, where you’ll also find daily made-from-scratch specials and more than 40 beers on draft. The laidback bar offers live performances and makes for a perfect place to catch the game, depending on the day, and always offers tranquil views of the river and surrounding greenery. The family-friendly spot has its fair share of seafood too, just in case water views give you a hankering for crab cakes with your steak.

Available for Reservations

This brewery is housed in a massive, multi-level venue, appropriately sporting one of the largest waterfront decks in Philadelphia. Manayunk Brewing offers original small-batch beers, including year-round classics like Monk from the ‘Yunk and the seasonal Yunkin’ Pumpkin. You’ll also find tons of domestic cans and drafts, and a wide-ranging food menu that covers everything from fresh-made sushi to stone oven-fired pizzas, so you’ll always find your perfect pairing for a waterfront meal.

Morgan's Pier

Penn's Landing
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This staple beer garden boasts 500 seats and a full calendar of concerts and other events for a social-forward waterfront experience. If you’re there for a meal, expect casual fare like wings, salads, flatbreads, and a few seafood options, along with summery cocktails, frozen margaritas, and more than a dozen draft beers. Open daily until 2 am, Morgan’s Pier is the choice for going out and staying out.

Available for Reservations
Marielle Mondon is a writer from Philadelphia. Follow her @MarielleMondon on Twitter and Instagram.